Louisiana abortion bill withdrawn after uproar

Louisiana abortion bill withdrawn after uproar

A bill in the Louisiana legislature aiming to charge women and their doctors with murder for obtaining or providing abortion services was withdrawn from consideration on Thursday due to the outrage and a successful attempt to amend it.

The measure by state Representative Danny McCormick would have abolished abortion in the state, granted constitutional rights to all unborn children from the moment of fertilization and classified abortion as a homicide crime.

The measure drew international attention and was criticized by people on both sides of the debate about abortion.

It was removed from discussion by McCormick late Thursday after opponents changed it to say that women could not be charged with murder for seeking or obtaining abortion and inserting an exception to the state's abortion ban for the life of the mother, according to the state's legislative information website.

The measure was returned to the calendar after the amendments, according to the website. McCormick didn't respond immediately to a request for comment from Reuters.

Prosecuting women for obtaining abortions is not favored by many anti-abortion groups, and the Louisiana Right to Life group said last week that it opposes the bill. The group said on Thursday that it did not expect the measure to return for further consideration during the current legislative session.

The Louisiana Right to Life applauds the Louisiana House of Representatives for a united stand for life and for moms, the group said in a press release.

The bill was introduced two days after a leaked draft ruling showed the U.S. Supreme Court poised to overturn the 1973 landmark Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion nationwide.

The bill is one of a series of proposals by conservative states to restrict access to abortion, and is a sign of Republicans feeling emboldened by the draft opinion. Such restrictions could go further than the so-called trigger laws, bans and other regulations that will take effect in some 26 states if Roe is overturned.